Buying a used car, truck, minivan, or SUV can be exciting but if you aren’t sure where to begin in order to find a great used vehicle, the task can end up being stressful and daunting.  Knowing what things to consider before, during and after your used car purchase can help alleviate frustrations and costly mistakes.  Today, we’re sharing our secrets to buying a great used car…


Know What You Need

Obviously you want your vehicle to take you from point A to point B, but there are many factors to consider before deciding what one will do that best.  Do you do have a long commute where you might benefit best from a fuel efficient vehicle or do you require a larger vehicle to transport more people?  Will you need to tow things such as a boat or trailer?  Or will this vehicle need to squeeze into smaller spaces such as parking ramp or a small garage where a more compact vehicle would be more ideal?  Answering these questions before you begin your search can help guide you into whether a sedan, minivan, SUV or truck are the best fit for your lifestyle.


Know What You Want

After you know what vehicle fits best for your individual needs, it’s important to consider what your personal preferences are in styles and options.  Do you have a color preference or is that less important than a great price?  Are there added options that are a necessity for you such as a backup camera, navigation, steering wheel mounted controls, bluetooth compatibility or can you live without heated, leather seats if it means saving money?  Deciding what options are nice but not necessary before you begin your search can help eliminate vehicles that don’t fit the bill ahead of time.


Decide Your Budget

Now that you know what kind of vehicle you’re looking for and your preferences in added perks, you can focus your attention on what your budget is and what is feasible within it.  While it may be easy to focus simply on the monthly budget you have to work with, it’s important to look at the total cost of the used car purchase including registration, insurance and fuel costs.  Remember that the expense of owning a vehicle doesn’t stop when you drive off the lot.  Research into maintenance costs can be helpful as well.


Search & Review

Once you’ve narrowed down the car, SUV, minivan or truck field, know what options and additions you’re looking for and how much of a budget you have to work with, you can begin your search for finding a great used vehicle.  There are many resources online to aid in your search for your next used vehicle including search engines, dealer websites and social media platforms.  Once you find a number of vehicles that fit your criteria, do some more research to find out added information such as their safety rating, customer experiences and any issues known with that particular make and model.  But don’t stop there!  Before venturing into a dealership for a test drive, do your homework on the dealership.  Check out their reviews online to see what their prior customers have experienced when working with them.


Test Drive It

It sounds unfathomable but a recent study shows that 16% of car buyers purchased their vehicle without ever taking it out for a test drive!!  And another 33% only take them out for a quick tool around the block before signing on the dotted line and buying it.  But this oversight could end up costing you thousands in repairs that could have been avoided or in buying a used vehicle that you don’t actually enjoy driving!  Do yourself a favor and get behind the wheel of the vehicle you’re considering purchasing.  See how you feel inside of it, how it handles the road beneath you and if it’s comfortable to you.  You might be surprised to find that a vehicle you thought you loved isn’t as great on the road or even a vehicle you didn’t think you’d enjoy could be just what you were looking for!  But you never know if you don’t get it out on the open road.


Ask For A Report

No two used cars are the same and while they may be the same make and model, their individual car history reports could be wildly different.  Always ask for a car report to help you see if there have been any accidents to the prospective vehicle and if so, the severity of its damages.


Know Your Credit

There’s an old G.I. Joe adage that knowing is half the battle and when it comes to your credit, the saying couldn’t be more true.  By knowing where your credit stands, you can avoid the pitfalls of thinking you don’t have options when it comes to financing or making you accept terms that are less than ideal.  You might think you know but until you find out for sure, you’re only guessing.  You’re entitled to one free credit report a year and if you haven’t done so yet, find out where you stand.


Shop Your Financing

Don’t assume that the dealership is the best place to secure financing.  And in the same regard, don’t assume it’s the worst.  Shop around to see what banks, credit unions and dealerships have to offer before settling on one in particular.



It might seem like an impossibility but some used car dealerships, like Broadmoor Motors, offer a 30 Day Powertrain Warranty on their vehicles.  Additionally, Extended Warranties like the ones Broadmoor Motors offers might be available for purchase when buying your used car, truck, minivan or SUV.  Find out before you test drive if the dealership backs their vehicles with a warranty of any kind and what exactly it covers.


At Broadmoor Motors, we specialize in finding the right used minivan, truck, SUV or car to fit your personal or business needs, all while giving you the best deal we can on both your purchase and trade in.  Our family has been in the car business for over 60 years and continues to be family owned and operated in all of our Caledonia, Hastings and Wayland locations with financing available to those who qualify.  We will find you the right vehicle to fit both your budget and your needs in a pressure free environment.

Let Broadmoor Motors save you time and money when buying your next quality, Pre-Owned Car or Work Truck and on your next Car Rental.  Whether you need a short term car rental, long term car rental, a replacement while your vehicle is getting serviced or simply need to replace your car, minivan, truck or SUV with a great used vehicle, we can help you out.  Broadmoor Motors is here for all your Car Rental, Car Sales, and Auto Service needs in the greater Grand Rapids, Wayland and Barry County area.  Give us a call at 616.698.9595 in Caledonia, 269.397.2400 in Wayalnd or 269.320.6304 in Hastings to see how we can get you back on the road!